Tuesday, February 07, 2006


I think it is fair to say as the weeks go by I have been getting more and more edgy in terms of homesickness. I am thankful that I have not sunk into deep home sickness but I have begun to realize how easy it is to become self-absorbed.

I first realized the first point when I met some new people at the weekend. I dominated the conversation entirely telling them various bits of information about me and my life. I wanted them to know and accept me, but came closer to overloading them with information and probably freaking them out. Any person who asked me innocent questions got lots of my thoughts and questions just poured out at them (my answers to the question "how are you finding New Zealand" were sometimes epic in lenth and slightly odd in terms of content). It is probably due in part to my not having made any close friends here yet and thereby needing to talk. But I think it is also due to fact that it is very easy (for me at any rate) to become self absorbed.

The last few weeks I have just done whatever as it didn't seem to matter as I had so few commitments. I was leaving home between 8 and 9am but got home between 7 and 7:30pm missing dinner with the butchers and eating on my own (I am well aware that some folk have to work these hours but right now there is no reason or need for me to). I had time to watch two hours of TV a night then go to bed. Any form of personal time with God got junked. What started as enjoying a relaxed approach to life turned into doing what I wanted and not caring about anyone else and feeling more and more isolated. I had not realised that not knowing many people and spending time on my own would lead to me becoming self-absorbed so quickly.

A solutions to this struggle was not hard to find. I have now booked in time every week to catch up with at least one good friend back in the UK by phone as opposed to my normal method of email. This has the double benefit of allowing me to hear how they are doing verbally as opposed to in print (which is always better) and giving me contact with people that know me. This may sound selfish, and it would be selfish if it weren't for the fact that it is so important to hear how people are doing.

The cure to getting absorbed in yourself is to keep the important things important (Luke 10 v 27).

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